YOUNG, intelligent and beautiful, with a good job and the world at her feet Milly Day, woke up one morning and realised she was an alcoholic aged 26.

"I don't know why I drank," she said, "and didn't think that someone like me could be an alcoholic, but once I had one drink I couldn't stop."

After attempts to change her drinking habits to social drinking or occasional drinks failed she decided to do something about it.

Now four years on she has given up the drink and works for Recovery Trekking ( who help addicts of alcohol and drugs recover through walking long distances.

She said: "Recovery Trekking combines trekking with the 12-step recovery.

"I had the fortune of taking a woman in early sobriety along the Camino de Santiago, and saw first hand just how much this method works - the transformation in her over the course of just one week was really quite staggering.

"She was a willing participant, ready to face any personal demons, which certainly helped. She also had two recovering alcoholics walking alongside her, whom she trusted and could relate to."

Ms Day said the benefits of a long trek for recovering addicts is that life becomes simplified, reducing stress and anxiety. It is good for the body and the mind as the walker has the goal of finishing each section each day.

"I want to make others aware that, besides local treatment centres, rehabs and 12-step fellowships, there are numerous recovery options at your disposal," she said.

With a large number of people relying on alcohol or drugs in Swindon and Wiltshire she said it was important to confront the problem. One way was to take one of the questionnaires online which can identify if someone is slipping into addiction but without having to talk to anyone.

Ms Day grew up in Marlborough and used to work in the town but now lives just over the county border at Lambourn.

She plans to continue working with the addiction recovery trekking firm but would like to train in Dance and Movement Psychotherapy.

"I am certainly not alone as nearly a third of people in Swindon, Wiltshire’s worst affected town, abuse drugs and alcohol, and a new wave of intoxicants is sweeping the entire county," she said.

Her main problem she explained was she didn't have a stop button so one drink was never enough. In a devastating article she wrote for Cosmopolitan she described in detail her fall from social drinker to washed up alcoholic.

After a particularly bad session she resolved to change attending her first 12-step meeting for alcoholics after that. She still attends weekly meetings to remain in good health and free from addiction.

Ms Day is happy to give advice to those concerned. She can be contacted at